By: Teo Soh Lung
I am truly amazed that the Singapore government has done nothing to solve the frequent fires at our industrial estates. In 2015, it was reported that there were 158 industrial fires. In 2016, there were 159 industrial fires. This means that there was one fire in every two days for the past two years.
Why are our ministers not concerned about the frequency of industrial fires? Are they sleeping on their jobs, growing fat with their million dollar salaries?
The fire that happened at ECO Special Waste Management (ECO) on 23 Feb contained poisonous fumes and explosions were heard. It was only put out after four hours of hard work by 200 SCDF personnel using equipment including unmanned firefighting machines. I cannot imagine the amount of water that was wasted in putting out the flame.
While the government accuses Singaporeans of wasting water and will soon impose another tax of 30% for consumption of water, why is nothing done to prevent industrial fires? How many cubic tons were used? IS ECO footing the bill?
ECO may be able to claim compensation from their insurers for the damage caused to their factory. We have no recourse on the damage caused by the toxic fumes. Have the employees and those living near ECO been asked to have their health tested for inhalation of poison?
We complain about the haze emanating from Indonesia. We think our environment is in good hands and our ministers are on the top of their jobs. The frequent industrial fires certainly shatters my confidence in our ministers. It is time Singaporeans know that our ministers are not taking care of our environment and are allowing our air to be polluted by frequent industrial fires, many of which are toxic and kills. They must be made accountable to us.
Republished from Function 8.